Weekly Newsletter

Pastor David’s Weekly Devotional
     Perhaps one of the most neglected aspects in making spiritual resolutions is the act of confession.  We can be disappointed in ourselves, and even feel ashamed over our sins, but if we do not confess our sins to the Lord our resolutions are at best hollow and at worse hypocritical.  In the book of Proverbs we find this provocative truth: “There are those who are clean in their own eyes but are not washed of their filth” (Prov 30:12; see Jer.2:22).  We cannot pretend to be able to correct our mistakes, or right our wrongs, simply by willing ourselves to be a better person.  Holiness is not achieved by pulling ourselves up by our own spiritual bootstraps.  We simply cannot will ourselves into spiritual maturity.

     We are absolutely dependent on God for any and every degree of personal holiness (see Jn.15:5).  And when we fail in our attempt to be holy – i.e., self-disciplined, righteous, faithful, submissive, humble, etc. – we need to be quick and wholehearted in our confession and repentance.

     One of the best prayers of contrition that I have ever read, and prayed, is found in the book of Puritan prayers titled, Valley of Vision.  Let me encourage you to read and pray as often as necessary.
HOLY LORD,
I have sinned times without number, and been guilty of pride and unbelief, of failure to find thy mind in thy Word, of neglect to seek thee in my daily life.
My transgressions and short-comings present me with a list of accusations, but I bless thee that they will not stand against me, for all have been laid on Christ; go on to subdue my corruptions, and grant me grace to live above them.
Let not the passions of the flesh nor lustings of the mind bring my spirit into subjection, but do thou rule over me in liberty and power.
I thank thee that many of my prayers have been refused – I have asked amiss and do not have, I have prayed from lusts and been rejected, I have longed for Egypt and been given a wilderness.
Go on with thy patient work, answering ‘no’ to my wrongful prayers, and fitting me to accept it.
Purge me from every false desire, every base aspiration, everything contrary to thy rule.
I thank thee for thy wisdom and thy love, for all the acts of discipline to which I am subject, for sometimes putting me into the furnace to refine my gold and remove my dross.
No trial is so hard to bear as a sense of sin.
If thou shouldst give me choice to live in pleasure and keep my sins, or to have them burnt away with trial, give me sanctified affliction.
Deliver me from every evil habit, every accretion of former sins, everything that dims the brightness of thy grace in me, everything that prevents me taking delight in thee.
Then I shall bless thee, God of Jeshurun, for helping me to be upright.

Together in and for Christ,
Pastor David

Scripture Readings for the Week (Monday – Sunday ~ Week #1):
Genesis 1-3; Joshua 1-5; Psalm 1-2; Job 1-2; Isaiah 1-6; Matthew 1-2; Romans 1-2
Recommended Reading:
“Valley of Vision: A collection of Puritan prayers” ed. by Arthur Bennett

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